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Lakesite receives Municipal League award for Small City Progress

FIshing Rodeo in Lakesite
Children participate in Lakesite's annual Youth Fishing Rodeo.

As the city celebrates its 50th anniversary, the city of Lakesite is proud of its many accomplishments and why the Tennessee Municipal League is pleased to present Lakesite with an award for Small City Progress.  

The award will be presented Tuesday, July 25, 2023, at the 83rd Annual Conference of the Tennessee Municipal League (TML) held at the Renaissance Nashville Hotel.   

Incorporated on Jan. 20, 1972, Lakesite has gone from a population of around 500 to one of more than 1,850. This growth has necessitated the city to grow from three to five commissioners and the hiring of its first full-time city manager, Kirsten Ert.  

Under the current leadership, Lakesite has completed the city’s first ever strategic plan with the assistance of UT- MTAS, and is in the process of developing  a Parks and Recreation Master Plan, which will hopefully help with obtaining grants for future projects. The city also took over the management of the community pool, previously maintained by volunteers, with a long-term goal of replacing the pool with a larger and more modern facility.  

Other improvements include:  

  • Completion of the final phase of the pedestrian enhancement project in the commercial district through the help of TDOT grant funds; and  
  • Stormwater improvements through the use of ARPA funds.  

Internally, the city has overhauled its personnel policies to make employee benefits more competitive and boost morale; has overhauled financial processes such as payroll and compliance; and has made major IT upgrades including email, servers, and cyber security. The city is also working to be more transparent by posting agendas, minutes, and other information into an online depository, and has created an online building permitting and payment system that will save the city $12,000 annually.  

The city is also using social media to provide community engagement and has expanded its partnerships with local business in an effort to increase the amount of community events held by the city, including its popular children’s fishing rodeo.